Gotham's New Power Couple Is More Terrifying Than Joker & Harley Quinn Ever Were

WARNING: The following contains spoilers for Arkham City: The Order of the World #4, now on sale

Batman's rogues are inherently frightening for the most part, with twisted designs and terrifying powers. But sometimes, it's their attempts at normalcy that makes them truly horrifying -- such as a recent attempt at domestic life that's created Gotham's most horrible power couple ever.

Arkham City: The Order of the World #4 by Dan Watters, Dani, Dave Stewart, and Aditya Bidikar revealed just how terrifying Doctor Phosphorus and Nocturna are as a romantic relationship and how they're quietly more terrifying than Joker and Harley Quinn ever were.

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Arkham City: The Order of the World has been focused on some of the survivors of the A-Day Massacre as they make their way through the streets of Gotham. Two of the most terrifying though have found surprising solace together and in hiding -- Doctor Phosphorous and Nocturna. The pair found a populated apartment building and attempted to create a mundane life together, seemingly unaware or unconcerned with the toxic effect their presence would have on the other people in the building around them. Arkham City: The Order of the World #4 saw the pair confronted by Doctor Jacosta Joy, one of the last surviving doctors from Arkham. They tried to feign normalcy, inviting her up to their home where Dr. Joy discovered how they've been killing their neighbors by merely existing near them.

Nocturna and Doctor Phosphorous are both highly dangerous villains on their own, with one version of Doctor Phosphorus even being responsible for the eventual death of Batman via radiation poisoning. This toxic effect on those around him can kill without anyone ever really realizing what is happening, as was the case for their neighbors. Nocturna is a far more sinister figure, with vampiric attributes that lead her to kill animals and drain the blood of others. Alone, they are serious threats to the safety of others and worthy opponents of the Dark Knight and his heroic allies. Together, the pair could be genuinely terrifying, capable of killing entire families without anyone ever even really realizing the cause.

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It's especially notable that they've adopted an almost domestic life together. It makes them surprisingly comparable to the nefarious romance that once existed between the Joker and Harley Quinn. Like Phosphorus and Nocturna, the Joker and the then-villainous Harley were almost a dark subversion of a typical romance. Their twisted romance left a trail of innocent bodies across Gotham City, slaughtering plenty of people for fun. But Nocturna and Doctor Phosphorous are quietly far more frightening as a couple. Phosphorus' mere presence can kill those around them, and Nocturna is capable of surviving and picking off any survivors. Phosphorus and Nocturna also don't even seem to really realize how bad they are unlike Harley and Joker.

Phosphorus and Nocturna could leave a massive body count across the city without even trying. If they go on the move, they could become increasingly hard to track down. Their inherent power also makes them a genuine threat to the entire Bat-Family, let alone any single hero who'd encounter them. Their delusions of normalcy, which tracks with Norcutna's history in the Pre-Crisis DC Universe, adds a tragic aspect to their relationship as well, with both seemingly in denial of any danger they're putting others into. It all adds up to make the pair a serious threat to the people of Gotham City, especially if they remain uncaptured while the city focuses on other pressing threats. There's no telling just how dangerous this new power couple could really become.

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Brandon Zachary (4342 Articles Published)

Brandon Zachary is an Associate Writer with Comic Book Resources and has written for CBR since 2018. He covers breakouts on comics, film, television, video games, and anime. He also conducts industry interviews, is a Rotten Tomatoes certified film critic, and knows SO MUCH about the X-Men. For requests, comments, or to hear his pitch for a third Avatar series that incorporates robots, you can contact him through [email protected].

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